Samantha Bee: Some Advertisers Have Returned, but Will She Fully Recover?


On May 30th, Samantha Bee, host of TBS’s Full Frontal, made what would’ve, at any time before now, been a career-ending comment during her show (for more on the incident, click here). The left-winger referred to the daughter of the President of the United States as a “c-word,” and I don’t mean “conservative.”


Bee made the remark in response to Ivanka posting to social media a photo of her and her son (see here) which, according to Bee, due to the fact that illegal immigrant children weren’t allowed to go to prison with their parents (explained here), was insensitive.

Subsequently, sponsors began walking backward.

State Farm, AutoTrader, and others pulled away.

On June 6th, Bee sort of apologized:

“Hi, I’m Samantha Bee. You know, a lot of people were offended and angry that I used an epithet to describe the President’s daughter and advisor last week. It is the word I have used on the show many times, hoping to reclaim it. This time, I used it as an insult. I crossed a line, I regret it, and I do apologize for that.”

Okay. That was nothing to write home about, but it was still an apology. Unfortunately, she kept talking:


“The problem is that many women have heard that word at the worst moments of their lives. A lot of them don’t want that word reclaimed; they want it gone. And I don’t blame them. I don’t want to inflict more pain on them. I want this show to be challenging, and I want it to be honest, but I never intended it to hurt anyone, except Ted Cruz [the crowd laughs]. Many men were also offended by my use of the word. I do not care about that [more laughter].”


“I hate that this distracted from more important issues. I hate that I did something to contribute to the nightmare of 24-hour news cycles that we’re all white-knuckling through. I should have known that a potty-mouthed insult would be inherently more interesting to them than juvenile immigration policy. I would do anything to help those kids. I hate that this distracted from them. So to them, I am also sorry.”


“And look, if you are worried about the death of civility, don’t sweat it. I’m a comedian. People who hone their voices in basement bars while yelling back at drunk hecklers are definitely not paragons of civility. I am — I’m really sorry that I said that word but you know what, civility is just nice words. Maybe we should all worry a little bit more about the niceness of our actions.”


Okay, that doesn’t sound like dripping remorse.

And yet:

Because nothing really means anything, now — three weeks after the eruption — advertisers have slowly returned.

June 20th’s episode saw the greatest number of non-Turner-owned advertisers supporting the show since the controversy — nine — which nevertheless is a far cry from the 19 she had previously.

In fact, none of the following have returned:

Orkin, Taco Bell, Apple, Verizon, Haagen-Dazs, Jim Beam, Windows, Febreze, Discover, Geico, Snickers, Diamond Producers Association, Centrum, Outshine fruit bars, and State Farm.

She doesn’t seem too worried. Especially about anyone mistaking her for being truly repentant. In fact, on the 20th — speaking about Border Patrol agents being upset the media had claimed they kept children in “cages” — she joked about her Ivanka attack:

“Wow, who knew conservatives were so sensitive about the ‘c-word.’ I should make a note of that.”

Bee’s understanding seems to be that some conservatives (of whom only the women matter) were upset she used a word. She doesn’t appear to grasp that the truly shameful aspects of her action were the cruelty of attacking an innocent, the disrespect for the presidency it flaunted, and the further damage to civil discourse it caused.


Only time will tell whether advertisers have a clearer view.


What do you think? Will there be any real consequences for her actions, or will her inexcusable attack fade out of the collective American memory?

For more takes on ridiculous statements by entertainers, check out my articles on Amy Schumer and Ashley Judd.

Find all my RedState work here, and follow Alex Parker on Twitter.





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